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John Nielsen, General Manager, Europe, Middle East and Africa Customer Service and Support at Microsoft and Paul Norris, General Manager, Europe, Middle East and Africa Premier Field Engineering at Microsoft
Have you ever welcomed an open window on a warm summer night? Unfortunately, the seemingly simple pleasure of an open window to feel the night’s breeze can facilitate a potential death threat for people in mosquito-infested Malawi -due to malaria. Every year, 250 million people are infected with malaria, and one million die. Most of these tragic deaths occur among children younger than five years old. Did you have any idea that so many children die in Africa of malaria each day, the number rivals that of seven sold-out jumbo jets?
While the delivery of anti-malarial drugs is challenging due to numerous factors- an 80 percent reduction in mortality rates can be facilitated by using physical barriers – such as mosquito nets – that cost less than $5 each to make.
These staggering statistics caught the eye of a team from Microsoft Services in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) who decided to use its skills and technology to help young people in Malawi forge a healthy and successful future.
The group’s work to help improve lives in Africa and address the most difficult societal issues through technology began with projects in Mali and Madagascar in 2009. This year, the focus is on addressing the most pressing public health concern facing people in sub-Saharan Africa: malaria. This initiative is calling upon the skills and passion of our people to help the children of Malawi stay healthy, learn and thrive.
So what is the plan?
And the work doesn’t stop when our team returns home or when the mosquito nets are in place. Microsoft is forming a Technology Mentoring Network with the people of Malawi that will offer ongoing support and training to young Malawians in their final year of school.
We’re incredibly proud of this opportunity to use our team’s resources and expertise to work closely with an incredible local community.
To find out how you can get involved, please click here.